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Three Times the Legal Limit in Alcohol-related Car Wreck

A San Antonio police officer named Stephanie Brown, who had been an officer for three years, was killed when she was struck head on by an SUV driven by former U.S. Army sergeant Chris Baldaramos. As Eva Ruth Moravec reports for the San Antonio-Express News, Baldaramos's blood-alcohol content was apparently three times the legal limit at the time of the San Antonio car wreck.

As Moravec reports, San Antonio Police Chief William McManus said, "Whatever level he was at was high enough for him to get up on the highway, go the wrong way and kill a police officer. From my standpoint, if you're 0.08 or above, you're a danger on the roadway."

Baldaramos was no stranger to drunk driving. He had been charged with DWI last year and was on probation from that incident. It is likely that he had driven drunk on prior occasions, as he is what some might characterize as a "high-functioning alcoholic," or someone whose tolerance allows for an extremely high blood-alcohol content.

As to his 0.24 blood-alcohol content, Texas university professor John Roache said, "By the time you get up to three times the legal limit, even a chronic alcoholic is going to show signs of impairment."

University research scientist Robert Foss explained that Baldaramos should have passed out at 0.24 BAC, but didn't, likely because he was a heavy drinker, and that his chances of getting into a car wreck were 30 times greater than those of a sober driver.

Source: San Antonio-Express News, "Blood alcohol was nearly 0.24, source says," Eva Ruth Moravec, May 20, 2011

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